In developing a new trademark for Harvard University Press, we set out to unite the Press across imprints and media, to solidify its visual identity as it expands into the digital age of publishing, and to help increase the Press’s recognition.
One essential consideration was to find a balance along the continuum between the traditional and the modern. This re-imagined “H” for Harvard is formed by six crimson rectangles, suggesting a bookshelf. The total image evokes a traditional paned window—but also the rectangles of our modern digital devices.
The new visual identity emphasizes the Harvard name (previously obscured within the seal), which has always been one of the Press’s greatest assets. It is set in classic serif lettering, which contrasts and complements the bold geometric symbol—appropriate for an institution that publishes both authoritative and groundbreaking work.
The new mark creates an anchor for the Harvard University Press family of logos, functioning well side by side with the intricate colophons of the Press’s specialized imprints, such as the Belknap Press, the Loeb Classical Library, the I Tatti Renaissance Library, the Dumbarton Oaks Medieval Library, and the Murty Classical Library of India.
The new identity is simple enough that it will be effective both in traditional applications, such as book spines and pages, and also in the digital applications that have become an increasingly important publishing medium for the Press.